tv Florida State of the State CSPAN January 11, 2018 5:09am-5:49am EST
next year. >> benjamin frankly and arthur lee, really americans first professional diplomats conducted these two treaties. and this treaty of commerce was essential. it granted france most favored nation trading status. and the french were very excited about being able to sort of get into that economic trading war with great britain after the war was over. and this treaty would remain in effe several years afterwards. >> american history tv every weekend on c-span 3. in his final state of the state address, florida governor rick scott discussed the response to hurricane irma and outlined his priorities for this year's legislative session, including more funding to prevent opioid abuse, and strengthening workplace sexual harassment laws. currently in his second term, governor scott is ineligible to
run for re-election this year. this is 40 minutes. >> also joining us in the east gallery is his wife, first lady, ann scott. [ applause ] >> good morning. thank you for your graciousness towards me and my wife. and it's wonderful to be here. i can think -- just starting, i can think about the first time i gave this speech. so i'm honored to deliver my final state of the state address today. i would like to first recognize
a few people. first, speaker of the house, richard corcoran. [ applause ] >> speaker, i appreciate your commitment to cutting taxes, for fighting to make sure every student can get a great education. senate president joe negron. [ applause ] mr. president, your focus on lake okeechobee and florida's environment will benefit businesses and residents for generations.
senator lopez-contera. [ applause ] >> carlos, thank you for all you do for our great state and joining me in the fight for freedom and democracy in cuba and venezuela. i would also like to recognize attorney general pam bondi. she cannot be here today. but pam has been a true advocate for crime victims and has been a leading voice in our fight against the opioid epidemic. there's no doubt that her efforts have saved lives. let's give a big applause to the attorney general. [ applause ] >> chief financial officer jimmy petronis. [ applause ]
jimmy, i was proud to appoint you to cfo. in a very short time you've done so much to help florida families. i want to thank you for all you're doing for florida firefighters. thank you, jimmy. [ applause ] >> commission of agriculture, adam putnam. [ applause ] adam, thank you for fighting for florida's critical agriculture community and everything you've done to help out the industry, especially after hurricane irma. i want to thank chief justice lebargo and florida supreme court. i want to thank each of you for all your service. [ applause ]
i would also like to thank my wife, ann. there isn't a day that doesn't go by that i'm not thankful for your unwavering support. as first lady you've done so much to help florida families, from visiting schools, promoting literacy and helping find forever homes for kids in foster care. i'm so proud of all that you've done. you took a chance on me 45 years ago, a skinny kid without a penny in his pocket who talked too fast, with only a dream. you believed in me every day since then, including the day i told you i wanted to run for governor. when no one else thought i had a chance, you stood by me. i love you. [ applause ]
>> i also want to recognize my son-in-law, pierre and my oldest grandson, august. [ applause ] august either wants to be a paratrooper like his great grandfather or a police officer when he grows up. by the way, i love being a grandparent. it's the best job in the world. i know how disappointed you all must be that you won't get to hear another great speech like this. so try to hold back the tears. putting jokes aside, i stand
here today at the beginning of my last year as governor, thankful for the opportunity that we have all had to help our beloved state of florida. i am thankful that in 2010, with the amazing support of my family, the people of florida gave me the unbelievable opportunity to try to turn the state of florida around. this has been the most rewarding job. there were naysayers who told us that there was no way that a businessman with no experience in politics or government could possibly be successful at helping to turn florida's economy around. fortunately for all of us, the naysayers were wrong. when i was in business, i would see politicians come and go. they would always make promises that they would be business friendly, cut taxes and reduce regulation. and usually, it was all just talk. nothing much ever happened. i had been in business in almost every state and i brought up an issue about permits or licensing to government leaders that often
just repeat their same old promises and reassure me that they would get back with me. of course, they rarely did. in 2010 when i ran for governor, i promised to change the status quo and create an environment where businesses can succeed and create jobs after jobs for florida families. the results speak for themselves, working together we've created an environment where our private sector has added nearly 1.5 million jobs. [ applause ] >> our gdp has grown 26% in seven years. our home values have sky rocketed. we've decreased state debt by $9
billion. our unemployment rate has gone from over 10% to now 3.6%, which is almost a ten-year low and lower than the national average. so those are some great statistics, but these are not about statistics. they're about real people. like many people i grew up in poverty. i can tell you firsthand having a job is not something that anyone should ever take for granted. florida has experience d the mot incredible economic revival because together we've worked hard to cut taxes over 80 times. which has saved florida families
more than $7.5 billion. working together, we've taken billions of dollars out of government's hand and given it back to florida families. like many of you here, this is our last year in this position. this is my last session to cut taxes and we must acknowledge that unfortunately at some point there will be politicians sitting in this chamber who are not as fiscally responsible as we are today. i'm sure there will be people who hold down our jobs down the road who want to increase taxes. otherwise known as taking more money from hard-working floridians. decades ago, florida voters approved an amendment to the constitution that prohibited a state income tax. the skeptics warned that bad
things would happen. skeptics were wrong. i want 2018 to be the year that florida voters pass a constitutional amendment that makes it harder for politicians to raise taxes. [ applause ] my proposal would require two-thirds of the legislature to vote on tax increase for it to become law. some have asked if this proposal would be in effect during a financial emergency or another national recession. and my answer is clear, absolutely. it's during times of economic downturn where this proposal is needed the most. it will force leaders to contemplate living within their means rather than taking the
easy way out and just sticking it to the public by raising taxes on families and job creators. i ask all of you to join me in this fight and ensure we will do all we can to not let future politicians undo the hard work we've all done to grow florida's economy and create jobs. we need to secure a strong economy for our children and our grandchildren. i've also put the florida tax cut package this year that will truly benefit every florida family. before we took office, everyone who had a driver's license faced a massive fee increase. this year i want to reduce those fees back to pre2009 levels by cutting the fee of renewal driver's license from $48 to $20. i want to cut the fee on
original regular driver's license by more than 43%, from $48 to $27 and i want to cut the fee on original commercial driver's license by more than 10%. my dad was a truck driver. if he had extra money back in his pocket and my family, that would have been a big deal. my tax cut proposal also includes sales tax holidays, help families prepare for the school year and hurricane season. after the storms we experienced last year, we need to have a longer sales tax holiday so people have time to buy the supplies they need, like generators, batteries and flashlig flashlights. my proposal extends the current one-week sales tax holiday to three weeks over a three-month period to ensure people have ample time to get the goods they need before the start of next hurricane season. i don't think anyone in this room would have predicted the mammoth storm hurricane irma would become. a portion of our state was safe from irma. we saw it shift, turn and
literally cover our entire state. it was like a scene from a bad movie. floridians came together. we all faced hurricane irma together. as i travel the state i heard story after story of families helping one another and communities standing together. the response and solidarity that was shown by our state was one of the proudest moments that i have had as governor. and when i was urging people to get prepared for the storm and to evacuate, many of you in this room helped to raise awareness in your communities. i want to thank you for doing that. [ applause ] >> and after the storm, we all showed up, from handing out water, working at food banks. so many floridians and many of you in this room helped your neighbors in need. and i believe florida has come back even stronger. [ applause ]
florida demonstrated to the entire world how to prepare and respond to a natural disaster. and two heroes who helped florida prepare and respond to hurricane irma are with us today. i would like to introduce you to lorna and michael davis from jacksonville. laura and michael both serve in the florida national guard and were deployed along with thousands of our brave national guard members during the storm. their deployment was at a very inconvenient time for the couple. their wedding was set in jacksonville beach the same week the hurricane was impacting florida. instead of postponing getting
married they decided to exchange vows in full uniform at the orange county convention center as they prepared for storm response. [ applause ] isn't that great? did you see the pictures? laura and michael chose to put service before self, a trait we should all strive to have. thank you for your sacrifice to protect your fellow floridians and be sure to give all these legislators the details on your wedding registry. just when we thought we got through irma, maria was quickly approaching puerto rico. but we were so blessed, florida was spared.
sadly, our fellow americans in puerto rico were devastated. like many of you in this room i've been focused on helping pewter re puerto rico recover and rebuild. i've had the opportunity to visit puerto rico twice since the storm. i've tried to help the people of puerto rico any way i could. we've had hundreds of thousands of puerto ricans come to florida since maria. my goal is that florida be the most welcoming place for people displaced by hurricane maria. [ applause ] we have set up centers to help them get connected to resources. we made it easier for their students to get enrolled in our schools, removed barriers for professional licenses so people can go quickly get to work in
our state. there's still more we can do to help puerto rico and everybody impacted by that storm. this year i'm proposing $12 million in funding to establish the english language learners academy, focusing on reading improvements and making sure that students displaced by hurricane maria have access to important programs. i ask each of you to support me to make sure we get funding for this important program this year. [ applause ] as we saw throughout this storm, our first responders came to the rescue of many. not only did our first responders and national guard do an outstanding job during hurricanes irma and maria right outside of florida. following maria, 55 deployed to puerto rico and following hurricane harvey in texas more than two dozen fwc officers
helped to rescue more than 500 people trapped in flooded areas. although they're not here with us today, please join me in giving these individuals a big round of applause. [ applause ] law enforcement have done an incredible job protecting florida familyies. i hope each of you will support my pay raise of $3 million for allstate sworn officers this year. i also support a measure going through the constitution admission, free tuition who families of fallen police officers, military members who have lost their lives in the line of duty. [ applause ]
>> since i've taken office, 41 officers have been tragically killed in the line of duty. these brave and women who decide as heroes, it's important that the state does everything possible to take care of the families who lost a loved one working to protect all of us in all of our communities. think about it. it's the least we can do. last thing our military men and women and our first responders need to think about when they go to work every day is will my family be taken care of if i'm gone? two of those heroes that died in the line of duty last year are sergeant sam howard and officer matthew baxter. they were senselessly shot while on patrol in kissimmee. sergeant howard's wife and
i will stop at nothing to fully support the families of fallen police officers like deborah clayton. that's why this year i removed -- last year i removed cases from a prosecutor who refused to seek justice for fallen law enforcement officers. i want to be very clear n florida, we have zero tolerance for anyone who attacks florida law enforcement officers. [ applause ] i will fight to make sure justice is swift and these killers are prosecuted to the full extent of the law. that doesn't stop with law enforcement. we have to take care of all crime victims in our state. no one in florida, who has been a victim of crime, should feel
ashamed. victims of crime are harassment deserve to have their voices heard. last year i was stunned to hear that state employees who reported incidents of sexual harassment did not have their identities protected in many circumstances. if you were a state employee who was the victim of sexual harassment and you filed a complaint with your agency, your name or other identifying information was not always confidential. i have daughters and learning that there was not a public records exemption for this really bothered me. i vowed to change the law. with the help of all of you in this chamber, we passed a law to protect state employees who were victims of sexual harassment. working together, we took a step forward to protect those in state government who were victimized. and, let's be clear, more has to be done. last month i signed an executive order that outlines the process for sexual harassment training,
reporting, investigating and recovery for victims at all of my agencies. i urge both chambers and all of the cabinet agencies to follow our lead and do the same. i also want to take a step further and encourage legislature to pass a bill this year that protects state employees who witness their colleagues being harassed or victimized. i want to ensure the identities of these brave individuals are protected so they feel encouraged to participate in investigations. unfortunately, we've seen this play out all over the country, including tallahassee. things have to change. it has to start here. it has to start in this building. the people of florida deserve much better than they're reading about in the news. [ applause ] .
it's all important we stand together and send a very strong message. florida stands with victims. [ applause ] i now want to turn to another serious topic. by working together we must combat in our state. like so many families i've had to watch a loved one struggle with drug abuse. it's hard and it's very painful. when i first took office, i worked with jim bondi and others of you in this chamber to fight against pill mills. our fight against drugs is clearly not over i would like to
introduce to you sarah shepherd. she is a parent partner at healthy start, nonprofit association in daytona beach, many of our partners against the fight in opioid epidemic. after overcoming her own addiction, she helps parents bring the challenging process so they can be reunited with their children. overcoming addiction requires incredible strength and bravery and we must make sure that resources are available to help people get the treatment they need. this year, i propose to invest $53 million to fight opioid abuse in florida. i also propose legislation to
prevent drug dixon the front end. reduce the ability for dangerous drugs to communities, give floridians the support they need and make sure that officers have the resources. i ask that all of you support these measures this session so that we can help sarah in this important work that she and so many others do in our state each day. thank you, sarah. [ applause ] i know i talk about job numbers a lot. to the point where the reporters all roll their eyes. there's some other statistics that are pretty impressive and show great strides in our state. since 2011, 20,000 children in foster care have been adopted.
[ applause ] think about that. 20,000 more kids with a loving family in just the last seven years. i would like to recognize recent new mom, erica ford, from tallahassee. [ applause ] erica is a child protective investigator with the florida department of children's and families. she has also worked to help children in need by serving as a
foster parent sheechlt asked to foster a baby boy named adam in 2015. she quickly fell in love with him. when his younger brother, avery, was born the next quleer, she also began caring for him. she wanted to do all she could to give them a better life and made the decision to permanently open her heart and these children by officially adopting the two young brothers as a proud, single mother. [ applause ] erica, thank you for changing the lives of these precious children. your actions, no doubt, will inspire more floridians to adopt. since 2013, i've had the opportunity to award nearly 13,000 veterans with governor's veterans service award.